Keynote Speaker | Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Bring Mark to Your Group or Audience

Mark gives insightful talks and motivational keynotes on innovation, entrepreneurship, and leadership topics almost every week of the year, ranging from venues large and formal (Google, Samsung, Salesforce’s Dreamforce conference, NASDAQ’s Entrepreneurial Center, Watermark Women’s Conference) to small and interactive (leadership teams and boardrooms, classrooms at UC Berkeley). He speaks locally across the US and has given international keynotes on most continents as well.

Mark Coopersmith Keynote 2017Mark enjoys meeting with smaller groups of leaders visiting the SF Bay Area and Silicon Valley to better understand how we drive so much innovation and entrepreneurship, and also addressing large conferences and company meetings where he shares insights, examples and inspiration around growth, innovation and keeping employees engaged.

Event managers seek Mark for his unique perspectives including from his published writings and findings, real-world experience and examples, pragmatic approach and tools, and his wry, humorous and engaging approach.

Many of Mark’s talks draw inspiration from his recent book on leadership, “The Other “F” Word: How Smart Leaders, Teams and Entrepreneurs Put Failure to Work” (and he often signs those books at events as well). He also addresses a broader range of topics on innovation management, corporate entrepreneurship, leadership skills and driving change.

Mark Coopersmith Keynote 2017

Mark Coopersmith Speaking on Entrepreneurship in SF

Representative topics (and recent talks) include:

  • The Three “Sets” of Innovation and Entrepreneurship: Toolset, Skillset, and Entrepreneurial Mindset
  • Learn2Launch: the process of taking a venture from idea through launch (based on his 3 month intensive curriculum at UC Berkeley that has produced many high growth ventures such as
  • Can Entrepreneurship be Taught? Of Course, and Here’s How!
  • An Insider’s Guide to the Entrepreneurial and Innovation History of Silicon Valley and The SF Bay Area
  • Insider Entrepreneurship: Driving Entrepreneurial Thinking and Growth Inside the Large Enterprise
  • Connecting Innovation with Value Creation
  • From the R&D Center to Open Innovation: Different Models of Innovation
  • Leading Change: From Alignment, to Stakeholder Management, to Effective Execution and Metrics
  • Business Model Innovation

Recent Praise:


Addressing media and business executives in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia . . .

“Word is already spreading internally about your great talk yesterday. It really was exceptional: you engaged the audience so well, you had so many relevant examples of companies that did or didn’t put failure to work, and above all the topic resonated so well as we – especially here in the US – seek to take more risks and move into more unfamiliar territory to drive greater innovation. So many people commented to me afterwards how much they enjoyed your presentation and learned from it. It was the perfect combination of fun and actionable content!”

—Strategy and Business Development leader; global consumer electronics company

“Mark’s speech was superb–full of energy, enthusiasm, and wit.  The audience loved it, and was on the verge of cheering at every sentence.”

—Consul General of France

“Our people were blown away. Mark delivered the content at exactly the right level.  He ‘got’ our industry, ‘got’ what our people do, and got them really engaged all day. Mark delivered, and then some.”

—General Manager, Asteron Insurance

“I have been flooded this morning with compliments on the event.  People were so engaged, and I honestly think we could have fielded questions and discussions for another hour!!!”

—Head of Innovation, leading startup and corporate accelerator

Mark’s latest keynote —

The Other "F" Word: How Smart Leaders, Teams, and Entrepreneurs Put Failure to Work

The Other “F” Word: How Smart Leaders, Teams, and Entrepreneurs Put Failure to Work (2015)

THE OTHER “F” WORD: Failure, and How the Successful Put It To Work

In our relentless quest for innovation and growth, there’s one strategic resource that most organizations create every day.  Yet few of us use its power and potential to our advantage. That resource is failure–or, as incorporated in the title of my current book, ‘The Other F Word.’

Explaining the Failure Value Cycle: how to reduce the impact of failure and turn it from a regret into a strategic resource.

Mark explaining how to reduce the impact of failure in organizations.

Even for those enlightened leaders who recognize that the secrets to their future success may lie in today’s failures, most don’t know how to effectively leverage failure to spur innovation, drive growth and create more engaged employees. This provocative keynote provides leaders and teams with practical insights, examples, and tools to quickly and effectively put failure to work.

Highlights of The Other “F” Word  keynote include:

  • Culture: Begin productive conversations about this topic, moving it from taboo to the table. Reduce the fear of failure which stifles innovation, growth, and engagement.
  • Operations: Anticipate failure and respond to it productively. Understand different types of “failure zones” across your organization, and what to do about them.
  • Results: Leverage failure to drive innovation, growth, increased employee engagement, overall financial performance, and organizational resilience.


Additional keynotes include:

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At Nasdaq’s Entrepreneurial Center discussing how to drive innovation and growth.

CORPORATE ENTREPRENEURSHIP:  How do you accelerate innovation, entrepreneurial thinking, new initiatives, and growth within large enterprises?  As an executive, there are 3 critical success factors:

1.) Alignment of your initiatives with those of the organization.

2.) Ability to attain broad support up, down and across the enterprise.

3.) Consistent and effective execution.

Mark’s vivid case studies and insights – including those based on personal experience, his proven framework, and his practical tools will help you lay the foundation and roadmap to attain exceptional results in your organization.


Why is it that so much innovation, entrepreneurship, and value creation happens (here) in the San Francisco Bay Area and Silicon Valley? Mark is your ultimate guide. Growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area, with multiple degrees from UC Berkeley, and a career spent locally launching new businesses, creating networks, investing in startups, scaling global businesses, and investigating and participating in this phenomenal ecosystem – few can match Mark’s experience, insights and stories. Mark augments his insider’s perspective with research he and colleagues have conducted at UC Berkeley, findings from the World Economic Forum, and his role as NASDAQ’s inaugural author-in-residence to help locals and visitors alike better understand how we got here, the six key elements that support strong entrepreneurial ecosystems, and how others can accelerate the development of their own foundations.


Explaining how proven models of startup success can effectively be applied to larger organizations.


How to entrepreneurs think about coming to market? Customer discovery? Design thinking?  Dealing with brands?  Through advice and interactive exercises, Mark guides audiences through the critical behaviors that separate nimble, accelerated strategy from rote efforts at innovation.

Audiences include executives and professionals, leaders, their teams, C-suite members, board members, and other high-potential people in business, government and non-profits worldwide.

Media: The New York Times, The Economist, CNN, Fox News, ABC, NPR, Huffington Post, LA Times, Entrepreneur magazine, USA Today, and more

Engagements include Google, Dreamforce, IDEO, RocketSpace, Samsung, Wells Fargo and more, as well as educational events at UC Berkeley, Wharton, and various private organizations.

Categories include Leadership, Strategy, Entrepreneurship, Innovation, Growth, Performance, Failure, Management, Business Model Innovation, Corporate Culture, and Change Management.

Contact Mark here to inquire about his availability.